Watching the sunrise on our beach is such an awesome experience. In a turbulent world, there is so much peace on the other side of the beach crossover. It's nice to change the noise of traffic to the soothing sounds of the waves.
This is a scene from Palm Sola Botanical Garden in Bradenton, Florida, and was the first of three hikes with my nephew that hot sizzling day. The only moments we were cool were in the car between parks.
I painted this after reading a challenge from Becky Joy to paint with three colors: yellow ochre, ultramarine blue, and white. It was a good lesson and the painting was very interesting, but dull. It couldn't be brightened with those colors only, so I used cadmium yellow to finish it. I like it better now.
I have painted this scene before, but this one is a bit more loosey-goosey, which I am happy about. This is the Royal Palm Visitor Center in the Everglades, and two of the best trails are here: the Anhinga Trail and the Gumbo-Limbo Trail. There are also more alligators than I've ever seen in one place, which are, thankfully, viewed from the safety of the boardwalk.
The Everglades are in a battle to the death with big-money interests, so I hope Florida voters will figure that out in the next election. But don't get me started...
I used to live in this beautiful place, and I appreciated every moment there, even the rainy winters. I lived in Diamond Cottage on Suffering Lane; that was my actual address, no house numbers. Bermuda has the legendary pink sand beaches, and if you have seen the Photoshopped version on Facebook with the Pepto-Bismol pink beach, you have not seen Bermuda. It looks exactly as I have painted it. Yes, it does have pink sand, tiny bits of coral among the whiter grains, and you can see that when you are closer up. I have a bottle of it, pictured below:
Just because it's on Facebook doesn't make it so. I could make myself look 27 with my handy dandy Photoshop program.
A friend of mine was a taxi driver in Bermuda, and he once had a woman ask him to stop so she could get a bottle of turquoise water to take home. Wow.
This man was waiting for a train outside Venice and the light was shining so beautifully on him. In spite of my digital camera having that delay before being able to snap the first shot, I did get the picture before our train pulled out of the station.
I hope I see Venice again before I shuffle off this mortal coil. What a beautiful and unique city.
I was inspired by artist Jean Thomas for this one, after seeing her drawing of a face in a navigational chart. She gave me a chart and I put it far from me and looked at it until I saw a mermaid. Most of the drawing followed the lines of the map, but I added some flourishes for the tail. Very therapeutic and fun. I think maps of all kinds are just naturally beautiful.
It is mango season and there are so many mangoes right now. For those of us who love them it is a glorious time. I was in Bradenton recently, standing under a tree that had dropped mangoes on the ground. Gorgeous fruit just lying all around. Way, way up in the tree were these beautiful collections of fruit, and I especially liked this one because of the lone ripe mango among the lavender ones. So, the title "Mango High" can be taken two ways.
Here's a tip I learned last week about cutting and peeling mangoes: make a cut around the fruit, all the way to the seed. Use a glass or a cup (easier with a cup, holding it by the handle) and scoop the fruit out of the peeling. Do it firmly and you will have no waste. Then chomp on the seed and get the pulp all over your face like you usually do. Mango high.